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#2 Adrian and #6 Utica skate to a scoreless tie Friday night

The #2 Adrian Bulldogs and #6 Utica Pioneers Men’s Hockey Teams squared off on Friday night in the season opener for both teams

By Chris Sugar / DIII Hockey News

The #2 Adrian Bulldogs and #6 Utica Pioneers met on Friday night at the Adirondack Bank Center in Utica. As expected, it was a hard-fought battle between the two rivals.

1st Period

Early on in the game, the Utica Pioneers seemed to show a little of their rust while Adrian controlled the puck for the first few minutes of the opening period. 

Utica seemed to get up to speed quickly, at the 4-minute mark of the period, Adrian goaltender Dershahn Stewart made a stellar save keeping it 0-0.

Adrian picks up a minor penalty just under 5 minutes in as #44 Julien Jacob is charged with interference. Utica headed to the powerplay and had a few great chances early on in the powerplay, both teams seemed to be very chippy to start out as expected, and both were very physical. 

Adrian kills off the penalty, but Utica looked great to start, chemistry seems to not be a problem early on with the new group. 

Adrian’s powerplay which operated at over a 40% success rate began the night 0-1 after Utica killed off the minor penalty on #2 Brian Scoville. 

Pioneers goaltender Ethan Roberts looked good early on, making a few tough angle saves.

A wild penalty kill ensues at the 10:43 mark of the period, this time it’s a boarding penalty on #13 Aiden Hughes, but the real story was Roberts making a toss-of-the-stick save in which the stick kept the puck out of the net midair! The penalty would then be fully killed off with just over seven minutes remaining in the first frame.

Pioneers goaltender Roberts had his skate blade dislodged with six minutes left in the first, a big development as #1 Bryan Landsberger entered the game due to the skate taking around five to six minutes and couldn’t be fixed. 

Landsberger makes a few saves and holds down the net until Roberts can return a few long minutes later. The first period ended tied 0-0. Pretty even game with both teams creating plenty of chances and goaltenders playing lights out. Pioneers led in shots 13-10.

2nd Period

Puck dropped and Utica began on the quick offensive, pressuring Adrian early on in the first few minutes. 

Ethan Roberts flashed the glove once again, stopping a one-time shot across the crease. The D1 transfer Roberts had some great moments early on.

Utica’s #17 Drake Morse picked up a penalty just over the four-minute mark into the period, Adrian seemed to score an early goal, but it wasn’t counted off as the whistle blew beforehand. 

A scramble ensues as in the dying seconds of the Adrian powerplay, Adrian’s Stewart makes a few diving saves and loses his stick which keeps the play flustered. Penalties are given to both teams as Adrian’s Ryan Pitoscia is charged for hooking, while Utica picks up too many men on the ice bench minor. 4v4 eight minutes into the second period. 

#13 Utica Pioneers trounce Suffolk to open the season

Four on three is now in favor of Utica as Adrian’s Riley Murphy gets penalized. Both teams “kill” their offsetting penalties and the play resumes at 5v4 with a Pioneers powerplay until after the whistle #6 Domenick Evtimov of Utica & #36 Ryan Pitoscia both get after-the-whistle penalties so send it back to 4v3… 

Through the halfway mark of the second period, there have been eleven penalties, six for Adrian, refs seem to be trying to get ahold of the game more and more. 

The Pioneer’s attack continues at even strength as they ring one off the crossbar and it remains deadlocked at zero, seven minutes remaining in the period. 

The second period ends with fifteen penalties thus far. eight for Adrian, seven for Utica. 

3rd Period

Update, there were no penalties through the first two minutes of play! No, the world didn’t collapse, we have a Utica penalty at 2:35 of the period by #9 Shane Murphy. Utica would kill this penalty off, playing tight defense. 

Uneventful nearing the halfway mark, both teams playing their game and nothing really of value occurs as we reach the halfway point of the period. 

Roberts was removed from the game once again temporarily at the eight-minute mark, second time this game Landsberger had to hold the net down while Robert’s equipment got work done. 

Utica headed to the power play at the 8:26 mark of the period as Adrian’s Jaden Shields slashed a Pioneer. The penalty was killed off with no major events occurring. 

Roberts returned to the game with just over eight minutes to play. 

Uneventful the rest of the way. The two head to overtime tied 0-0.

Overtime

The uneventful period until about two minutes left when Utica had a bad turnover in the neutral zone and Adrian got a flurry of shots on the net, Adrian couldn’t score as Roberts kept the puck out. He’s showing every bit of his D1 skillset tonight. Keeping the Pioneers in it. 

The game ends in a 0-0 tie, overtime ends, and it was a hard-fought game by both, these two face off again tomorrow afternoon in the massive two-game series! 

For more about the weekend of hockey in Utica, visit https://cnyhockeyreport.com.

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